PORTSMOUTH- During the Portsmouth City Council meeting on Monday, reports of coyotes within city limits were mentioned by Mayor Kevin Johnson.
“I received two emails and a phone call over the past week that we’re starting to have a coyote problem in our city,” he said during his June 14 mayor report. “It is something that we are going to have to address.”
Later this week, the Portsmouth City Health Department and City Clerk Dianna Ratliff took to Facebook to update the public on what is being done to deal with the situation. Working in tandem, PCHD Animal Control, Portsmouth Police Department and the City Manager’s office are seeking resolutions and attempting to find commercial licensed nuisance trappers.
According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, the following steps are their recommendations on how to deal with a spotting of coyotes.
1. Understand that coyotes are common throughout Ohio’s 88 counties in both rural and urban settings. There are no wild wolves living in Ohio.
2. Identify that the canine is truly a coyote and not a stray dog. See the back of this card for tips. If you determine that the animal is a stray dog, contact your county dog warden.
3. If you do have a coyote on your property, remove all “attractants” to possibly deter the coyote from returning. This includes removing garbage and pet food before nightfall and cleaning up around the grill. Coyotes prey primarily on small mammals such as rabbits and mice. Small pets may also be taken. Keep small dogs and cats inside or stay with them at night when coyotes are most active. Coyotes are curious, but generally fearful of humans. Clap your hands and shout to scare off coyotes that are investigating your yard.
4. If the coyote visiting your yard seems to lack a fear of humans or is presenting a conflict even after removing attractants from your yard, contact a nuisance trapper. You can locate a trapper near you by calling the Division of Wildlife at 1-800-WILDLIFE (945-3543). Coyotes in rural areas can be controlled through legal hunting and trapping methods. Consult the yearly Ohio Hunting and Trapping Regulations booklet for more information.
Reach Patrick Keck (740)-353-3101 ext. 1931, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @pkeckreporter. © 2021 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved.